Former heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua is promising to “rise to the occasion” when he steps in the ring with Andy Ruiz for a second time.
Back in June, Joshua was dropped four times before Ruiz stopped him in the seventh round to capture the WBA, WBO, IBF, IBO heavyweight world titles at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
The rematch will land on December 7th in Saudi Arabia.
There were some who felt Joshua appeared to be far too relaxed when he came to the ring for the initial bout.
Joshua explains that he needs to be more “switched on” before the first bell is ever rung.
“I need to start taking this approach to my fights where I’m a bit more lively,” Joshua said to BBC Sport. “I know I’m capable of it. There is too much at stake. If I go in there where I’m switched on, a time like the Ruiz fight where I am so relaxed, that might be the difference.”
After tasting his first defeat, Joshua evaluated everything from top to bottom. He plans to rise to a higher level – in the same manner, that he did when he challenged for world titles against Charles Martin in 2016 and Wladimir Klitschko in 2017. Another defeat would leave Joshua’s career in a very bad position when it comes to his future outlook on the top level.
“I think I had to grieve and ask myself all the questions you would expect. People say ‘you lost,’ I call it a blip. I can’t wait to get in there and fight him. Every time I have fought a champion I have risen to the occasion,” Joshua said.